In just a few short months, the newest member of the British royal family will be born. Ever since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s announcement, all eyes have been on the couple and the growing bump. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex who recently wrapped up their royal tour of Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Tonga, may be royal rule-breakers, but there is one tradition that they are required to follow.
Once a royal baby has been born, the parents must wait several days to publicly announce their child’s name so that Queen Elizabeth and the other members of the royal family know and can check that it’s suitable.
“Royals, however, also have to consider the great responsibility in naming a new member of the family, and I expect they want to be 100 percent certain of their choice before announcing the name and sealing the baby’s place in history,” royal commentator Victoria Arbiter told Town and Country.
Prince William and Kate Middleton chose the regal, classic names of George, Charlotte, and Louis for their children. However, seeing as Harry and Meghan don’t have as much royal responsibility, they will have more freedom when it comes to selecting a baby name.
For instance, William and Harry’s names are much more traditional than their cousins Beatrice and Eugenie due to their royal pecking order. The topic of baby names came up when the couple visited Melbourne during their royal tour of Australia in October.
When 12 year-old Charlie Wolf travelled on a tram with the duke and duchess, he asked Meghan, “Have you got any names for the baby?” She replied, “We haven’t decided. We’ve been given a long list of names from everyone and we’re going to sit down and look at them, have a talk about it.” The royal baby, due between March and May 2019, will be eighth in line to throne after Prince Harry.
While Harry and Meghan were bestowed with the respective titles of Duke and Duchess of Sussex, that dukedom can only be passed on to their child if it is a son. Therefore, if they were to have a daughter, the title would die out.
The Daily Mail reports that the child will be referred to as Earl of Dumbarton if he is a boy or Lady (first name) Mountbatten-Windsor if she is a girl, unless the queen bestows the title of prince or princess on them.
However, as Meghan is a proud feminist and the queen has been known to bend the rules with titles (especially because Harry is reportedly her favorite grandchild), this formality may be waved. According to Sportsbet, the current front-runners for the royal baby’s name are Arthur and Alexander for a boy and Diana, Alice, and Grace for a girl.
This article was originally written by Alex Lilly. For more, check out our sister site, Now to Love.